Why American striker Alexa Coyle is sold on ‘incredible city’ and revelling in her move to Hibs
She may have only arrived on these shores little more than a month ago, but already American striker Alexa Coyle is part of Hibernian’s furniture.
Following a goalscoring debut in the 4-0 win over Kilmarnock in the SWPL Cup a fortnight ago, the Montana University graduate's enthusiasm for life on and off the pitch is infectious.
Having plied her trade in College Soccer Division 1 in the States, Coyle was ready to embrace a new challenge overseas. That's where Hibs boss Dean Gibson stepped in. So far, the 22-year-old has taken to her new adventure in the Scottish Capital like a duck to water with her eagerness rubbing off on her new team-mates.
“I feel really settled here,” Coyle told The Evening News ahead of tomorrow's SWPL Cup Group B clash with Stirling University at Livingston's Tony Macaroni Arena.
“The club has been so welcoming and Edinburgh as a city is just incredible. It’s been like that since Dean made initial contact with me about signing for the club so it's been great so far.
"The club really showed a lot of enthusiasm to bring me over so that was really attractive and made it an easy decision for me.
“My team-mates have been unreal with me in helping me settle in, but also I’ve been really impressed with their technical ability on the ball and tactically as well as their ability to read the game. It’s a different approach to back in the States where the focus is very much on athleticism.
“As a forward, the goal is always to score so I was delighted to do that in my competitive debut. That said, the most important thing was that we got a promising first result. It was a solid performance from the team.”
Coyle has been joined at Hibs this season by compatriots goalkeeper Gabby English and midfielder Toni Malone and she was in attendance with the latter at the men’s team’s 2-0 victory over Kilmarnock in the Premier Sports Cup last-16 tie at Easter Road last weekend.
“I was very impressed with Hibs last week and I definitely want to get along to more games if I can,” Coyle explained. “I only stay an eight-minute walk from the stadium, so it’s really close by. I'd love to experience what it's like when Hearts visit so that's definitely one to look out for.
She added: “I’ve been blown away by Edinburgh. Not only am I enjoying my experience on the pitch, but just living in this city is great with endless things to do. The history, the beautiful architecture, it has everything. And with the festival going on just now, it's just been really fun. It's great having Toni and Gab here too and that definitely helps and provides that little bit of additional comfort.
“I’m looking forward to getting back out on the pitch tomorrow and playing at Livingston’s stadium. I have seen pictures and it looks a really cool place to play football. We’ve got a good run of games coming up so it's going to be a busy period.”